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Market profile: electron microprobes.

Electron microprobe analysis (EMPA) is a non-destructive surface analysis technique. Electron microprobes bombard a small area of a sample (about 1 to 3 micrometers in diameter and depth) with focused electrons to produce x-rays, which are measured using a wavelength-dispersive (WD) or energy-dispersive (ED) spectrometer to provide quantitative and qualitative information element analysis.

WDS is used for a more precise analysis of concentrations down to 0.01 weight percent. In addition, quantitative analyses require polished sample surfaces. EMPA can analyze all elements except for helium, hydrogen and lithium. EMPA also produces backscattered electrons, secondary electrons and cathodoluminescence and can be used as a scanning electron microscope for image analysis.

Unlike x-ray fluorescence (XRF), EMPA can be conducted on an area as small as a few microns or less. Also, EMPA requires less power for excitation than XRF and the analysis is made in a textual context. The technique is fast and sensitive at the ppm level.

Three manufacturers participate in the market. Cameca, the dominate player, manufactures the SX100 and SX100R fully automated universal EPM analyzers. JEOL's JXA-8200 can analyze as many as 21 elements, while Shimadzu's EPMA-1600 features secondary electron resolution of 6nm. Electron Microprobe Automation Systems are provided by Advanced MicroBeam, Thermo Noran and Geller MicroAnalytical Laboratory. The initial system market for EPM analyzers totaled around $20 million in 2000 with growth in the low single digits.

EMPA has applications in a variety of disciplines, including geology, archeology, materials science, metallurgy, chemistry, physics, electronics, biology, medicine, environmental science and engineering, forensics, archaeological, glasses, ceramics, metals and thin films. Commercially, its most popular applications are in the semiconductor and petroleum industries.
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Title Annotation:Jeol Ltd., Cameca, Shimadzu Corp. instruments, market outlook
Comment:Market profile: electron microprobes.(Jeol Ltd., Cameca, Shimadzu Corp. instruments, market outlook)
Publication:Instrument Business Outlook
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:4EUFR
Date:Nov 15, 2001
Words:272
Previous Article:Endpoint.
Next Article:The bottom line: data from the recent industry financial reports. Dollar amounts in millions.
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Endpoint: China.

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